Public Accounts Committee and Auditor General MUST Recommit to Holding Public Officers Accountable

 

This Committee scrutinises the value for money – the economy, efficiency and effectiveness – of public spending and generally holds the government and its civil servants to account for the delivery of public services. As delivery models for public services have changed, so the reach of the Committee, in following the taxpayer’s pound, has spread beyond government departments to also examine public bodies and private companies providing public servicesUK Parliament

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) is an important working committee of parliament, Its purpose is to be a watchdog of public spending. It is unfortunate that in our post-independence period the PAC has not prosecuted the many obvious cases of financial malfeasance read the flouting of the financial rules of government. The BU household is not surprised that the attempt to call three ministers of government to account – Chris Sinckler, Denis Kellman and Michael Lashley – has become mired in ‘process’ issues. What is new!

An ineffective PAC translates to an ineffective Auditor General whose many reports laid in parliament have been largely ignored by the political class. It has become a pointless exercise by the media (traditional and social) to highlight the Auditor General reports and the workings of the PAC. The BU household is pleased to read about attempts to enforce the law in an attempt to breath life into the PAC and by extension the Auditor General’s office –these are after all important organs of our governance system designed to ensure the people’s business is well managed.

We live in hope.

Read 2015 Auditor General Report

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69 Comments on “Public Accounts Committee and Auditor General MUST Recommit to Holding Public Officers Accountable”

  1. David December 10, 2016 at 9:44 AM #

    Full dislosure

    Auditor General seeks answers on Four Seasons and LIAT

    Added by Kaymar Jordan on May 26, 2016.

    Saved under Local News

    The ill-fated Four Seasons hotel project, as well as Government’s $142 million investment in regional airline LIAT, are among a set of dubious transactions for which this country’s Auditor General Leigh Trotman is seeking answers.

    Government’s support for LIAT came under heavy scrutiny.

    Government’s support for LIAT came under heavy scrutiny.

    In his 2015 report, Trotman also raised serious questions about a number of loans which Government made to various private entities in which the state happens to be the main shareholder in some instances. The loans included $4.6 million which was issued by the Public Enterprise Fund to Needham’s Point for construction of the Hilton Hotel, $2 million to Southern Golf which operates the Durants golf course, and the sum of $950,000 to Durette & Co Caribbean Limited, a window manufacturer which subsequently went out of operation.

    Hilton Hotel

    Hilton Hotel

    Since the Needham’s Point loan was issued back in financial year 2014/15, the principal has risen to nearly $6 million. However, the Auditor General said no repayments have been made. Furthermore, there have been no efforts by Government to recover the outstanding amount.

    He also explained that in the case of the Southern Golf, there was no loan agreement to speak of, while suggesting a write-off of the Durette amount-

    Government’s support for the Antigua-based LIAT also came under heavy scrutiny. However, after carefully reviewing Government’s financial statements, the Auditor General said he was still in the dark about its investments in the carrier. He has therefore called for “full disclosure” on the $142,733,148 that has been pumped into the loss-making carrier as at March 31, 2015.

    The stalled Four Seasons project.

    The stalled Four Seasons project.

    Equally difficult to come by has been information on the stalled Four Seasons hotel project. However, the Auditor General is seeking to get to the bottom of a $120 million debt, which was issued with a Government guarantee by late Prime Minister David Thompson back in 2010 after the project went belly-up.

    That guaranteed debt was called during financial year 2013/2014 by the bankers and Government was forced to pay an amount of $124,329,766 which entailed principal plus interest to the lenders. However, while the amount was subsequently recorded by the Treasury as an accounts receivable, the Auditor General says no payments have been received to date.

    He therefore wants answers on whether there might be a need for a write down or when or how this amount will be repaid, since it is also not clear what assets this advance is linked to.

    Another questionable sum of $141,500,000 was issued in loans to the Barbados Tourism Investment Inc (BTII), with accrued interest of $19,351,206 as at March 31, 2015. Trotman pointed out in his report that no formal contract exists for the amount and to date no repayments have been received.

    However, he said in a previous meeting with the management of BTII, the auditors were informed that this amount pertained to work carried out on behalf of Government. “This matter needs to be clarified and resolved by the relevant parties,” the Auditor General advised.

    A similar situation exists with the Small Hotel Investment Fund where a loan in the amount of $35,528,362 (including interest) is yet to be repaid.

    The report also raised questions about $765,749,759, which has been recorded by the Auditor General as “cumulative advances outstanding” as at March 31, 2015. The monies were not properly authorized but, in some instances, transfers were granted to recipients who simply did not have the money to repay.

    The net effect, therefore, is that the official deficit would have been “understated” for the years when these transactions took place, Trotman pointed out.

    As has been the trend in recent years, this year’s report contains a number of recurring themes of unauthorized transactions, misplaced funds, and blatant under-reporting by a number of state entities, altogether painting a pathetic picture of this country’s public sector administration.

    In this regard, the Auditor General highlighted variances on several accounts, including $118,177,914 for pending lawsuits, which did not match the $116,305,080 submitted by the Solicitor General, resulting in a variance of $1,872,834.

    There was also a sinking funds variance of $28 million, as well as incorrect classification of assets, which affected the paymaster’s pension account which ended up with a debit instead of a credit balance of $2.4 million.

    The opposite occurred at other Government departments, including the Transport Board, where the accounts receivable ended with a large credit balance of $5.5 million.

    One noticeable error and omission which the Auditor General took note of was a First Citizens’ Bank loan in the amount of US$25 million. There were also approved loans, which were not utilized in a timely manner. This affected commitment fees, in the amount of US$888,929 on a loan from the Caribbean Development Bank and US$266 023 on IDB loan funds.

    In terms of unrecorded liabilities, Government is yet to bring to book the sum of $195 million owed to the University of the West Indies. There was a further $152 million in unrecorded Treasury Notes and Debentures, as well as $2.7 million in returned pension cheques and over $4 billion in unclaimed employee benefits.

    The Accounts receivables were said to be overstated in the amount of $34 million.

    Earlier, Barbados TODAY reported on $1.3 million in dishonoured cheques that were written to Government. According to the Auditor General, some Government departments also fell prey to the unsavoury business practice as a total of $32,263 in bounced cheques were issued by unnamed Government departments.

    Like

  2. Bernard Codrington. December 10, 2016 at 10:11 AM #

    Public officers are accountable; but are they doing their jobs? How can we get them to do their jobs? Is something wrong with the selective process for these post holders?
    Do we really need to go to the IMF when the problem is that of mismanagement?

    Like

  3. Hal Austin December 10, 2016 at 10:33 AM #

    Where are our constitutional lawyers? Is it not contempt of the house for witnesses to ignore a request to appear before a parliamentary committee? Is it not contempt no to appear when summoned before a Senate committee? Is it not contempt not to appear before a house of commons committee
    I have made a little footnote on a similar issue. Once Sir Hector Sants, CEO of the Financial Services Authority, appeared before the Treasury Select committee and was economical with the truth.
    I picked it up and wrote about it. He later issued an apology. Parliament is one of our highest courts.
    If the PAC invites anyone – even parliamentarians – to give evidence they cannot refuse, and must tell the truth on pain of punishment, including imprisonment.
    This is the Westminster model we talk so much about, but in reality very few of us, including lawyers, know anything about.

    Like

  4. millertheanunnaki December 10, 2016 at 10:52 AM #

    @ Bernard Codrington. December 10, 2016 at 10:11 AM
    “Do we really need to go to the IMF when the problem is that of mismanagement?”

    Clearly BC, you have seen the light and your eyes have been opened to the glaring incompetence that besets the public sector.

    The same public sector which the PM has been showering with praise of false adulation.

    How can an Accountant General and a Revenue Commissioner be retained in their posts when such a state of abject affairs of financial management and downright unprofessionalism exist when it comes to the use and concomitant fiduciary responsibilities of taxpayers’ money in a shrinking economy with thousands unemployed and relying on the State for their very survival?

    The same public sector will soon be blamed and turned into the political whipping boy when the IMF takes up permanent residence in the halls of the MoF for the Fumbling giant administration’s failure to make a difference by only compounding the situation.

    Now which side do you, BC, now stand on? Do you now welcome ‘outside’ intervention to set the efficient cat (IMF) among the incompetent pigeons or do you prefer a ‘carry-on’ with the blame game of it’s the BLP fault for not reforming and restructuring the public sector when tax revenues were high because of a burgeoning false economy’?

    Déjà vu 1992 here Bim comes. But this time with a serious vengeance like a hurricane on the path to destroy before there can be any building back.

    Just hoping, my friend BC, you are right about the negatives of a Devaluation outweighing any gains from a significant reduction in dependence on imported conspicuous consumption when the Devalued dollar cat enters the Central Bank pigeon coop.

    Don’t forget the old queen Christine Lagarde still has it in for the old and poorer Dr. Puppet Worrell for his most out-of-place performance in intellectual rudeness, in Japan of all places.

    Like

  5. Well Well & Consequences December 10, 2016 at 11:12 AM #

    We keep saying these politicians many lawyers and doctors are dirty, corrupt and sellout their own people like MoneyB said so long ago.

    They EXTORT money from business people and keep the circle of bribery going for decades, disadvantaging their own people….I am in no way excusing business people or lawyers in this because they could have exposed this years ago, given a list of the corrupt to the newspapers with proof, before the advent of social media and it would have stopped, giving the majority on the island a chance, but they did not, they enabled corruption, that’s why I am happy to see this list produced by Thomas Harris…because they had a falling out and that is what they deserve..

    https://nakeddeparture.com/2016/12/08/tamara-nancoo-and-peter-harris/

    I will never condone these vicious acts against the people oof Barbados., the only thing I admire about Thomas Harris is his undying loyalty to the Harris family, the traitors from parliament to the law firms and medical offices could learn to be as loyal to their own people from Harris..

    Like

  6. David December 10, 2016 at 11:14 AM #

    @Miller

    You need to address the systemic issue which is -the perennial issue of both political parties while in government frustrating the workings of the PAC and ignoring the reports of the Auditor General.

    Like

  7. millertheanunnaki December 10, 2016 at 11:16 AM #

    @ Hal Austin December 10, 2016 at 10:33 AM
    “If the PAC invites anyone – even parliamentarians – to give evidence they cannot refuse, and must tell the truth on pain of punishment, including imprisonment.
    This is the Westminster model we talk so much about, but in reality very few of us, including lawyers, know anything about.”

    You said it, Hal. Right on the money! And this is the same so-called sophisticated well-educated country which sees nothing wrong with incarcerating a young man for smoking a spliff.

    Westminster model, my ass! Just a parody by monkeys dressed in business suits performing like the black minstrels of yore but in reverse order.

    Barbados governance system is becoming more and more of a third world banana republic of central African vintage.

    Wild, wild West, here Barbados comes!

    First a gunslinger, then a robber of the old and disabled speaking from a throne of Westminster imitation then an inheritor of wealth swindled through the Clico scam and now a pack of ‘get-rich-quick johnny-come-lately crooks and conmen using their offices to rob taxpayers even in full view of the people’s sheriff.

    Like

  8. millertheanunnaki December 10, 2016 at 11:24 AM #

    @ David December 10, 2016 at 11:14 AM

    Doesn’t the ‘political class include both parties?

    This DLP administration promised to clean up the mess left by the previous BLP administration.

    What have the people of Barbados gotten in return for their vote of confidence?

    “Why Good governance? Good Governance is characterized by the principles of participation, consensus, accountability, transparency, responsiveness, effectiveness and efficiency, equity and inclusion, and the rule of law. It assures that corruption is minimized, the views of minorities are taken into account and that the voices of the most vulnerable in society are heard in decision-making and the allocation of resources.”

    Maybe there is some validity to Pachamama’s use of the guillotine, don’t you think David?

    Like

  9. David December 10, 2016 at 11:32 AM #

    @Miller

    You have reinforced BU’s point, an ineffective PAC and Auditor General has been ignored by BOTH D and B for the last 40 years. A return to the BLP will mean nothing.

    Like

  10. Pachamama December 10, 2016 at 11:44 AM #

    David

    So you have a dog which has not bitten anybody, hasn’t barked, in forty years

    Would it not be rational to assumed that that dog is dead.

    And instead of letting a dead dog stink-up the place, should it not be buried, or burnt.

    Like

  11. David December 10, 2016 at 11:48 AM #

    @Pacha

    Is the systemic problem the ‘dead dog’?

    Like

  12. Pachamama December 10, 2016 at 11:49 AM #

    It should be about time that we are up to these tricks.

    Nothing new, the establishment always ignores ‘laws’, in this case when it suits their disaster capitalist intent.

    And we should start ignoring the laws we don’t like as well. Give them the chaos they seek.

    Like

  13. millertheanunnaki December 10, 2016 at 11:56 AM #

    @ David December 10, 2016 at 11:32 AM

    So why did the people change from OSA the small-time crook to Thompie the large-scale thief and liar with his band of slaughterers of the fatted calf following in his footsteps?

    With a change of administration the people in the audience watching the blood sport could expect at least 5 years of exposure of the damning deeds of the Dems under a Covenant of Hope.

    It’s time for Tweedlebee to perform at the circus again. There might just be some improvement in the economy and the re-fatted calf distributed more widely among the ordinary man and woman.

    At the end of the day it is not what the political class and their financiers have salted away but what the ordinary man or woman receives weekly and monthly in their pockets.

    The last 7 years have been pure hardship for the unemployed and working class while they watch a few rock-hard men take control not only of the economy but also the former poor boys calling themselves deceitful lying politicians become instant millionaires as if they won the lottery of corruption and graft.

    Ask Sharkmout Lashes if you think the Don of porn is in politics to make a difference to the state of morality in public office.

    Like

  14. David December 10, 2016 at 12:01 PM #

    @Miller

    Bear in mind most of the malfeasance taking place in the public service as sribed by the Auditor General is NOT possible without the private sector being complicit.

    Like

  15. Hal Austin December 10, 2016 at 12:31 PM #

    David,
    All good things come to an end, and we are now witnessing the end of liberal democracy, the intellectual girder, thee foundation, of mercantilism capitalism and all its descendants. This is the failure of the Enlightenment aft er 300 years. The Chinese timed it right.
    Look around the world and see the collapse of liberal democracy. This argument will take a long essay, but the jokers who call themselves political scientists at Cave Hill can kick off the debate, including the idiot who heads a department and claimed in print that there is one form of capitalism. Such intellectual buffoons.

    Like

  16. Jeff Cumberbatch December 10, 2016 at 1:00 PM #

    David,

    I have commented on this for my column tomorrow. I hope that I have presented therein a useful suggestion for reform of the status quo!

    JC

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Hal Austin December 10, 2016 at 1:07 PM #

    I want to start a campaign for Jeff Cumberbatch to be made a QC. It is normal practice for senior academic lawyers to be made QCs to reflect their seniority.
    J|eff is the only academic who engages with ordinary people and for that alone he should be honoured. We have a treasure, don’t let it get away. In fact, he should be made a justice of appeal. We missed an opportunity by not putting him on the CCJ.

    Like

  18. David December 10, 2016 at 1:15 PM #

    @Jeff

    Look forward to the discussion.

    A reasonable conclusion to be drawn based on current state is that we are facing a crisis of governance. We know Pacha will agree!

    Like

  19. millertheanunnaki December 10, 2016 at 1:16 PM #

    @ David December 10, 2016 at 12:01 PM

    The things is though, David, is that the money which keeps the wheel of corruption going around is not that earned by the private sector but from the taxpayers aka the national treasury much to the retardation of infrastructural improvement national development.

    You have forgotten one important player in the loop of corruption, the very senior public servants the so-called goalkeeper of the public interest.

    Top civil or public servants must be privy and complicit in the whole game of exchange of contracts to the private sector business people approved unjustifiably by the minister(s) of the Crown in return for an excessive bite of the taxpayers-funded cherry to feather the same minister’s personal financial nest egg or to fill his or her party’s electoral war chest.

    But these top bureaucrats out of fear of victimization or jeopardization of their own careers in the public service, or through sheer personal greed to get a piece of the financial action, in many cases decide to turn a blind eye and succumb complicity to the political whims of immoral ministers.

    How else can you explain the findings of the Auditor-General who is like a dog without a muzzle but clearly one without teeth?

    Like

  20. Jeff Cumberbatch December 10, 2016 at 1:20 PM #

    @Hal, Thank you for your kind remarks!

    Like

  21. Hal Austin December 10, 2016 at 1:21 PM #

    Miller, plse do not ignore incompetence.

    Like

  22. Hal Austin December 10, 2016 at 1:25 PM #

    Not at all, Jeff. I hope B’dos does not lose you to some American university. They are experts at stealing talent, that’s why they are number one. Hope my proposal is not the kiss of death.

    Like

  23. David December 10, 2016 at 1:35 PM #

    Here is a lawyer admitting the 3 MPs who failed to show up can be punished. True or false!

    No-show MPs can be punished

    Like

  24. Well Well & Consequences December 10, 2016 at 2:47 PM #

    http://www.barbadostoday.bb/2016/12/10/pms-gift/

    What gift what, this is Fruendel pimping for votes, some of these civil servants were probably acting for 15 and 20 years in those positions, the ministers refuse to stop the dirty politics.

    Vote them out, bajans have to learn that they do not owe government ministers anything, government ministers work for the taxpayers and are OWNED by the taxpayers…these just refuse to do their jobs and should be punished…gift my ass, kick him out…fraud.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. chad99999 December 10, 2016 at 3:12 PM #

    In advanced countries, the reports of an auditor general can be influential, because there is a large middle class of white collar professionals who use the reports to shape their personal assessments of the competence of the government. Bad reports cost the government votes.

    In Barbados, where the general level of financial literacy is low, where fewer people pretend to be honest and upright, where the major political parties are equally incompetent, and where politics is much more “tribal”, the auditor general’s influence on an election is not likely to be decisive.

    Like

  26. Vincent Haynes December 10, 2016 at 4:34 PM #

    I realy dont know what all of you are grumbling about as this country is on the road to recovery….

    PM has put into law the permanence of 550 civil servant jobs and specified that University degrees was no longer the only criteria for appointment.

    3M to be spent on cleaning up the country.

    Approx 70M to be spent on gas and alternate energy.

    Approx 60M to be spent on the sugar industry.

    Roads to be fixed

    ….presumably elections are around the corner (January 21) after a very good independence wuk up…..viva the PM for another term…….not sure what the next budget could/would look like as we are still in ducks guts.

    Like

  27. chad99999 December 10, 2016 at 4:43 PM #

    Hal Austin is hysterical.

    The “collapse of liberal democracy”? Ha Ha Ha.

    Canada, Australia, the UK and Germany have not witnessed any changes to their stuffy establishment politics.

    In France, the stuffy establishment is being threatened by a young girl. They have survived much greater challenges. De Gaulle used to check in with his military commanders as a precaution against a coup.

    In America The Donald is proposing a few common sense changes. Corporate tax cuts. Fair trade. A wall to deal with illegal Mexicans. Screening of Muslims. Charter schools to compete with expensive under performing public schools.

    Apparently, liberals like Hal cannot tolerate any modifications to classic liberalism. What a shame!

    Like

  28. Reco Anthony December 10, 2016 at 4:46 PM #

    tell me people what they are going to turn up to say? when u could flout the laws an get away way wid it……these people are not accountable to no one here. thats why in just 8years minus thompson 2=6 years wid the scruff of the earth government what would u expect. just look at the taxpayers money down de drain, now givig hilton 12mil to shore them up, yet the hilton makig profit, these decent criminals are taking our hard tax dollars an simply giving it away to certain elites (whites) under shady shady doing. but then again dem is the new white nig———–gers in parliament

    Like

  29. David December 10, 2016 at 4:49 PM #

    Is Minister Kellman making reference to crown lands in this article?

    A resolution was also passed for Government to sell 14.27 hectares of Crown land located at Coverley, Christ

    Church for $15.2 million to the Barbados National Terminal Company Limited (BNTCL. While declining to say who had purchased the BNTCL, Kellman gave the impression that the land sold to the company would be used for the production of renewable energy.

    http://www.barbadostoday.bb/2016/12/10/barrack-lawyers-smiling-all-the-way-to-the-bank/

    Like

  30. Hal Austin December 10, 2016 at 4:51 PM #

    Ignore Canada, it is an insignificant nation just punching above its weight because of its European (Scottish and French) cultural heritage.
    Is Australia Asian or European? The Ozzies themselves are having a moment of cultural confusion. Look at how they treat refugees? I am not sure what you know about the UK, I suggest nil and look at Germany, now debating banning the Niqab and Burqa, with a threatening populist right-wing, a return to Hitler.
    I realise Chad you are not the sharpest pin in the box, but plse think seriously about he state of the world, of which Barbados is part.
    That you call me a liberal shows your understanding of politics.

    Like

  31. chad99999 December 10, 2016 at 4:57 PM #

    A QC for Jeff?

    Does Jeff know his way around a courtroom? In the old days, when there were standards, you needed to distinguish yourself as a courtroom advocate before you could be considered for appointment to the ranks of the QCs and KCs

    Like

  32. chad99999 December 10, 2016 at 5:03 PM #

    Actually, Hal
    I am British. With the red passport and the right of abode.

    Like

  33. Hal Austin December 10, 2016 at 6:19 PM #

    I am surprised about that, Chad, because you know nothing about the machinery of British government. Do you read the press? Do you attend any public meetings? Without being rude, I have not come across anyone as malinformed as you for a long time about British politics. Even the brain-dead David Cameron has a better understanding.

    Like

  34. Hal Austin December 10, 2016 at 6:33 PM #

    Chad,
    Are you sure you live in London? Jeff is an academic lawyer, a large of whom are QCs. Nearly every law professor is a QC. Only litigators appear in courts.
    Most important legal work in developed jurisdictions is done in offices.
    That is why we have the so-called magic circle of law firms, the ones that make millions every year.
    Jeff is the only Caribbean lawyer that engages with the general public; you may not realise the significance of this, but it is enormous.
    Did you watch the Supreme Court in action over the last four days? Do you see any of those lawyers in a criminal court? There we had some of the brightest lawyers in British constitutional law, including a fellow of All Souls’ Oxford, and justice Sumption, one of our best historians and legal scholars, and a bench of legal scholars that could sink a ship, including Carnwarth and Neuberger.
    During my time at the Daily Mail the head of the legal department, Arthur Davidson, was a former Labour solicitor general and crown court judge. He was man more than generously willing to share his vast knowledge.
    Jeff is an incredible public intellectual. I appreciate this may not be a discipline that concerns you, but as a non-lawyer I find his views interesting, even when I disagree.
    By the way, I have very little respect for many of the lawyers and so-called criminologists who masquerade in Barbados. One-eyed men in the land of the blind and all that.

    Like

  35. Well Well & Consequences December 10, 2016 at 6:55 PM #

    Masquerade is the appropriate description for most of the lawyers in Barbados.

    Chad is confused, bajan, british, american..all of that still needs to be sorted out,.lol

    The ACs are scarce from this blog, any bet they are pimping behind Naked Departure with eyes peeled to see if another government minister’s name besides David Estwick is called as being a traitor to their people in Harris con game against bajans now that there is a massive falling out and as is the ACs jobs.

    Don’t worry ACs, the ways things are shaping up along with the long list of names left to reveal, yall will have lots of work in the next year before elections….lol

    Like

  36. Tony Trotman December 10, 2016 at 8:04 PM #

    There should be a clear, effective and indisputable procedure to deal with such matters. The MPs may hide behind legal technicalities but they still owe a proper explanation to the taxpayer: https://www.barbadostoday.bb/2016/12/10/no-way-mia/

    Mr Sinckler said “that the next election is also going to be fought for the moral heart of this country”. The statement is ironic – because it seems that Mr Sinckler, Mr Kellman or Mr Lashley do not have a moral duty to provide a proper explanation to the taxpayer.

    Like

  37. Exclaimer December 10, 2016 at 8:05 PM #

    “Since it was founded 100 years ago as an antidote to French government propaganda during the first world war, Le Canard enchaîné has remained a thorn in the side of France’s great but not-so-good.

    For a century, the satirical newspaper has provoked the wrath of presidents, politicians, tycoons and other public figures, to the point that in the 1970s even mentioning its name in cabinet meetings was reportedly a sackable offence……….”

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/dec/10/le-canard-enchaine-celebrates-100-years-mischief-making-france

    Like

  38. Gabriel December 10, 2016 at 9:30 PM #

    The last time PAC was in the news a PS who was caught sending money to NHC without proper authorization was forced out of the service and the minister quietly slapped on the hand.It would be interesting to hear these 3 blind mice when faced with the prospect of a fine or jail.Maybe they will change the rule.I say no Pension to this lot .

    Like

  39. Sunshine Sunny Shine December 11, 2016 at 3:05 AM #

    Not one shite will come out of this. The three ministers already they have nothing to fair. Does not matter how far down they follow the money. The ministers got all bases covered.

    Like

  40. Well Well & Consequences December 11, 2016 at 6:25 AM #

    http://www.nationnews.com/nationnews/news/91322/imf-cautions-govt-nis

    Ah guess government ministers can no longer pick up NIS pension funds and put into the Maloney, Bjerkham, Tempro, Bizzy, Cow scams…ala 4 Seasons.

    http://www.nationnews.com/nationnews/news/91314/fix-sluice-gate

    After all the lies and denials by the fraud ministers of government, it’s back to the same old story.

    Like

  41. charles skeete December 11, 2016 at 8:56 AM #

    “Bernard Codrington. December 10, 2016 at 10:11 AM #

    Public officers are accountable; but are they doing their jobs? How can we get them to do their jobs? Is something wrong with the selective process for these post holders?
    Do we really need to go to the IMF when the problem is that of mismanagement?”

    The problems highlighted above and which have been plaguing governance since the constitutional amendments of 1971 is as a result of political decisions rubberstamped by politically appointed sycophants and others who are square pegs in round holes. Only if we can return to the days of senior public servants like Major Daniel , Sir Frank Blackman, A.F Parris , Algy Symmonds who knew their onions and were able to separate political considerations from judgments.

    Like

  42. charles skeete December 11, 2016 at 8:59 AM #

    “David December 10, 2016 at 12:01 PM #

    @Miller

    Bear in mind most of the malfeasance taking place in the public service as sribed by the Auditor General is NOT possible without the private sector being complicit.”

    In what way?

    Like

  43. Well Well & Consequences December 11, 2016 at 9:16 AM #

    Charles..you answered the question before you asked it, you only left out the important part…approved and signed off on by the crooked, bribed by the private sector government ministers…then rubberstamped by……..

    “The problems highlighted above and which have been plaguing governance since the constitutional amendments of 1971 is as a result of political decisions rubberstamped by politically appointed sycophants and others who are square pegs in round holes.”

    Like

  44. millertheanunnaki December 11, 2016 at 9:31 AM #

    @ charles skeete December 11, 2016 at 8:59 AM
    “In what way?”

    It’s called ROI (return on amounts invested in the party in power electoral machinery).
    That is why there is a pressing need to either “corporatize political parties and make them subject to the laws which need to be beefed up or make it illegal for political parties to accept financing of their electoral or ongoing political activities from private individuals or corporate bodies.

    This would put the cost of elections strictly on the shoulders of taxpayers who are really the employer of the politicians entrusted to set policy in the interest of the State.

    Like

  45. David December 11, 2016 at 10:05 AM #

    Who is the private vendor who was awarded the contact to purchase the meters that never arrived on island?

    Name the vendors who supply the School Meals Department.

    See AG Audit reports for details.

    Like

  46. Willie December 11, 2016 at 1:37 PM #

    Ministers refusing to appear before the PAC; cabinet minister(s) disagreeing with their colleagues and remaining in their positions. How much lower can we sink. Is there no one on either side of the aisle who can firmly say ‘this is wrong?’. Former PM Arthur, what say you?

    Like

  47. David December 11, 2016 at 2:56 PM #

    Minister Kellman who is one of the three ministers called by the PAC has signalled to BU on his FB page it is the Accounting Officer to appear and give explanation.

    31 mins

    Denis Kellman

    Denis Kellman The accounting officer

    Like · Reply · 30 mins

    David King

    David King Why would the substantive ministers not explain/clarify the AG’s findings for the benefit of the PAC?

    Like · Reply · 26 mins · Edited

    Denis Kellman

    Denis Kellman He does through the Accounting officer

    Like · Reply · 1 min

    David King

    Write a reply…

    Like

  48. Violet C Beckles December 11, 2016 at 3:22 PM #

    Well, Well and you all have not seen where the money went, that was to be paid Beatrice Henry Estate to Violet Beckles now to her Heirs?

    We have been WARNING YOU ALL, Numbers dont lie, and the Land Bill for All the things the BLP , DLP and the DBLP government took monies to pay out, but the money never reach the owners,

    Ministers and Lawyers/Ministers pocketed,UDC NHC Better check Panama Papers money laundering accounts,

    Think Massive Land Fraud is a Jokes? The Bill going back, let just say from 1985,ABC highway land, Oval, High Court, NHC , UDC , COW , Cheltenham , CLICO , First Caribbean Bank that took over from Barclays accounts . Crook lawyers at every step , make a list to know who is who, and dont forget the houses up at the airport also 140 houses “NHC” missing under the BLP Owen and Mia ,Samantha Cummins/ Iona Marshall et al , NHC at that time and now again after looking to rig the Land Registry re-written ,,
    People with land tax numbers and bils but no deeds,lawyers not record deed, but took people money, waiting on “good title ” fraud after 20 years and not ” Clear title” of 70 years, We also hold the title deeds of the Plantations .
    Cover up by the Barbados Library, Barbados Archives, Barbados Land Registry , Barbados Land tax, and the Governors of the CB Dr Marion Williams also ,

    Lawyers/ Ministers taking turns laundering the VAT of first 15% from 1997,now 17.5% and still the trash problems? , , Do you all think that 2.5% more vat went to the trash pick up workers? A whole Nation taxed for trash? hahaha

    Government BONDS , sold to whites , and repaid by more taxes and vat, Whites need not work when niggers in government full of greed and fraud.

    We will keep watching till People wake up to truth, dont let lawyers on line make you double think your self, The lawyers on this blog is also part of the problem ,
    None will take cases with respect of the true owners they are all being paid to shut up and let the ball roll over the Public,

    Sir Charles Williams , Ralph Bizzy Williams and the rest of the 4 seasons scams, remember there is no listed deed nor name for “Black Rock Plantation” in Barbados records, So how can they get “clear title” for investors to back such a deal ,,, Not to worry We also have that missing deed, 95 plantation also missing from the history records, We have many of them , Now you may have some light on these Barbados matters of fraud,

    Now you can follow all the money and why Barbados can not get loans for NOTHING,TO DAM DIRTY CORRUPTION THAT INFECTED THE ENTIRE CARIBBEAN BANKING SYSTEM , AS DRUGS AND GUNS COME IN TO SUPPORT THE FRAUD BY THE RICH WITH BOATS AND PLANES, ACT LIKE YOU DONT KNOW

    Like

  49. millertheanunnaki December 11, 2016 at 4:00 PM #

    @ David December 11, 2016 at 2:56 PM

    It is most unusual to agree with a certified fool but this is one situation where Kellman is operating outside his norm and making sense.

    The PAC ought to be summonsing the chief accounting officers of the ministries/departments/ statutory bodies involved and legally responsible for the proper accounting of taxpayers’ monies.

    It is only there and then we would know if the political directorate i.e. ministers of the Crown have abused their political power by overstepping the line of policy approval and have dabbled in the realm of financial infelicities.

    Minister Kellman, you are on solid ground with this one but please stop the nonsense talk about cash basis versus accrual method as the reason why your administration is in such deep fiscal shit as you are with the South coast sewage outflow.

    “Speak your truth quietly and clearly, and listen to others,
    even to the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story…”

    Like

  50. David December 11, 2016 at 4:11 PM #

    @Miller

    Are you suggesting therefore that Mia -leader of the opposition forces- is engaged in politicking on her call for the three ministers to appear before the PAC?

    Like

  51. Gabriel December 11, 2016 at 4:23 PM #

    Miller
    You are correct and so is Kellman however the inquiry into the St Joseph hospital fiasco found that the minister was complicit in what went on in his ministry and he paid the price.

    Like

  52. millertheanunnaki December 11, 2016 at 4:53 PM #

    @ David December 11, 2016 at 4:11 PM

    Yes, Sir!

    Just like how all Opposition leaders behave when they smell victory at the next polls.
    Remember the D T walk out of Parliament even with Dennis the Menace in tow? Yet their monthly pay was not docked like the teachers.

    You must understand you are dealing with the political class and not ‘honourable’ men and women.

    There is some merit, if taken to the extreme, in what, Pachamama talks about regarding the guillotine.

    Maybe this is the time in the cycle of the grand scheme of things for another French-like revolution to clean the filth from the sty so that another set of political pigs can start shitting on the brass bowl people over again.

    Like

  53. Well Well & Consequences December 11, 2016 at 5:29 PM #

    No one wants to be held accountable or take responsible.,.the chief accounting officers will say they were acting on directives from the 3 ministers….who we all know were acting on phone calls they sat on tgpheir lazy asses waiting for from Maloney, Bizzy et al…to hear what the next scam against the taxpayers should be.

    I guess all their names will be bouncing around the bligs as thieves and crooks for years to come as long as none of the ministers want to be held accountable for unfairly dishing out contracts and taxpayer’s money for bribes and a cut off the top from minorities..that is their legacy, ah hope they are proud.

    Violet, you are living to see them all go up in smoke…lol

    Like

  54. Artax December 11, 2016 at 8:49 PM #

    “The PAC ought to be summonsing the chief accounting officers of the ministries/departments/ statutory bodies involved and legally responsible for the proper accounting of taxpayers’ monies.”

    “It is only there and then we would know if the political directorate i.e. ministers of the Crown have abused their political power by overstepping the line of policy approval and have dabbled in the realm of financial infelicities.”

    I have to agree with the above comments, but will add that perhaps the Permanent Secretaries of the ministries in question are the individuals that should have been summoned by the PAC, especially in the absence of any definitive evidence revealed by the Auditor General that directly identifies a minister as being responsible for authorizing payments or polices, which subsequently lead to the financial infelicities described in the AG’s reports.

    However, similarly to when a minister seeks to take credit for a successful project or policy initiative, why should he/she not accept responsibility when there is failure?

    And I must also agree that Mr. Kellman does not UNDERSTAND or INTENTIONALLY mis-defines the meaning of the accrual and cash basis systems of accounting.

    Also, Michael Lashley is ALLEGED to have written on social media that ministers should ignore any summons, from the chair-person, to attend PAC meetings, because “A person without a Law Certificate which is required by Law in Barbados to be considered as a Lawyer has no legal authority to summons anyone.”

    Like

  55. Well Well & Consequences December 12, 2016 at 3:30 AM #

    Art..that would mean that if the permanent secretaries were not given directives by those 3 ministers to dish out contracts and taxpayers money to the Maloney, Bizzys etc, they all acted on their own initiative and were contacted directly by those crooks, which is highly unlikely, seeing that Maloney, Bizzy, Bjerkham and company, deals with and barks at the ministers directly…to show everyone who is boss.

    That is why I keep saying, it’s way too easy for minorities to pick up a telephone, call up, demand to speak to and reach government ministers, it should not be happening.

    The majority population who with their large numbers in the population put the ministers in parliament and are the ones should be doing this, cannot just call them up and make demands and neither should the minorities.

    Like

  56. Artax December 12, 2016 at 7:42 AM #

    Well Well & Consequences December 12, 2016 at 3:30 AM #

    “Art..that would mean that if the permanent secretaries were not given directives by those 3 ministers to dish out contracts and taxpayers money to the Maloney, Bizzys etc, they all acted on their own initiative and were contacted directly by those crooks, which is highly unlikely, seeing that Maloney, Bizzy, Bjerkham and company, deals with and barks at the ministers directly…to show everyone who is boss.”

    @ WW&C

    Exactly the point I was getting to.

    If the PS were summoned by the PAC, they should be obligated to reveal whether or not they were directed by ministers to circumvent government policy and authorize the awarding of contracts or the payment of public funds to contractors.

    Under these circumstances (and with substantiating evidence), the PAC could enforce legal proceedings, as stipulated by the PAC Act, against any minister.

    Like

  57. David December 12, 2016 at 8:05 AM #

    Ronald Hascombe now retired PS at Housing was summons by the PAC and what happened?

    Like

  58. ac December 12, 2016 at 8:57 AM #

    When Mottley stop playing politics maybe she would grasp an understanding of the legalties governing parliamentary laws rules and guidlines which can stop her from making stupid judgement calls over and over again

    Like

  59. millertheanunnaki December 12, 2016 at 10:12 AM #

    @ Artax December 12, 2016 at 7:42 AM
    “If the PS were summoned by the PAC, they should be obligated to reveal whether or not they were directed by ministers to circumvent government policy and authorize the awarding of contracts or the payment of public funds to contractors.
    Under these circumstances (and with substantiating evidence), the PAC could enforce legal proceedings, as stipulated by the PAC Act, against any minister.”

    And you see why this is just one big pappy show put on by both sides of the political class of actors in the game of using taxpayers’ money for their parties and their own political ends and personal aggrandizement?

    Instead of going into to business in the private sector to get rich these politicians see the ministerial route as the quickest way to get hold of fast bucks; and with a compliant feeble cadre of senior public servants who also wish to live above the lifestyle their official remunerations can hardly afford the taxpayers are screwed.

    How come these senior public servants are not exposed and made to pay for these blatant acts of financial infelicities and sheer unprofessionalism.

    Or is it only the junior officers who are cashiered and brought before the criminal courts.

    Permanent secretaries are all chief accounting officers of their respective ministries along with the Heads of Departments.

    Like

  60. Artax December 12, 2016 at 10:27 AM #

    “Ronald Bascombe now retired PS at Housing was summons by the PAC and what happened?”

    What Happened:

    1) As it relates to the $2.46M per month NHC was receiving from the Treasury, NHC’s General Manager Lynette Napoleon-Young, Financial Controller, Carolyn Barton and Chief Legal Officer, Henrietta Bourne-Forde, and Housing Ministry PS, Ronald Bascombe, could not verify if there was parliamentary approval for the disbursement of those funds, or whether the funds were a grant or a loan.

    2) Jeptar Ince, who was government’s representative on the PAC at that time, raised concern “about the way the NHC representatives were questioned.”

    3) “At the end of the near hour-and-a-half long session in the Senate chamber, the BLP leader and other committee members were still SEARCHING for ANSWERS to SEVERAL QUESTIONS about the NHC’s FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT.”

    In your opinion, who do you believe should be held accountable, if the principal officials of the NHC were unable to account for the management of NHC’s financial resources?

    Like

  61. David December 12, 2016 at 10:55 AM #

    IF former PS Ronald Bascombe and his accounting officers could ”not verify if there was parliamentary approval for the disbursement of those funds, or whether the funds were a grant or a loan”, houston, we have a problem!.

    Like

  62. Artax December 12, 2016 at 11:32 AM #

    millertheanunnaki December 12, 2016 at 10:12 AM #

    “And you see why this is just one big pappy show put on by both sides of the political class of actors in the game of using taxpayers’ money for their parties and their own political ends and personal aggrandizement?”

    @ Miller

    Recall the DLP’s 2008 election campaign strategy was based on accountability and transparency. They even dedicated 4 pages of their 2008 election manifesto to “Good Governance.”

    Shorty after the DLP parliamentarians were assigned to their respective ministries, we heard daily complaints from each minister about the “financial mess” they found, left behind by the BLP.
    We heard about the corruption; cost-overruns; commencement of projects without contracts; missing UDC houses; and Thompson being “convinced that millions of dollars “bizarrely spent” during the previous BLP Administration are now stashed in foreign bank accounts.”

    Nine 9 years, this DLP administration is yet to DISCLOSE the DEPTH and EXTENT of the “mess” they discovered as well as FILE criminal suits against any member of the former BLP Cabinet.

    Also:

    1) PM Stuart and AG Brathwaite have not revealed anything further about the “improprieties” they witnessed during the 2013 general elections and the course of action undertaken to prevent future occurrences.

    2) AG Brathwaite has not disclosed the results of his promised investigations relative to Mottley and the LEC.

    3) Sinckler, AG Brathwaite or any representative of the RBPF have not informed Barbadians about the status of investigations into the death threat police allegedly heard by two men making against Sincker.

    Essentially, Miller, you are absolutely correct……… when you examine the above scenarios, and especially taking into consideration the BLP undertook similar action when they gain office in 1994, “this is just one big pappy show put on by both sides of the political class of actors.”

    Like

  63. racehrse December 13, 2016 at 9:58 PM #

    Business as usual! Who in the country has the nerve to put this to an end. In a few months they’ll be passing out Barrow’s in the voting line…………..

    Like

  64. Exclaimer December 14, 2016 at 4:05 AM #

    “Collecting tax is one of the key means by which governments are
    able to address poverty and inequality. But big business is dodging
    tax on an industrial scale, depriving governments across the globe
    of the money they need to address poverty and invest in healthcare,
    education and jobs. This report exposes the world’s worst
    corporate tax havens – extreme examples of a destructive race to
    the bottom on corporate tax which has seen governments across
    the globe slash corporate tax bills in an attempt to attract business.
    It calls on governments to work together to put a stop to this before
    it is too late.”

    http://www.barbadostoday.bb/2016/12/14/blacklisted/

    https://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam.org/files/file_attachments/bp-race-to-bottom-corporate-tax-121216-en.pdf

    Like

  65. Exclaimer December 14, 2016 at 4:23 AM #

    The rhetoric used by some of our politicians is off the scale.

    Why is Donville Inniss using threatening and abusive language against this Oxfam report?

    The report highlights the reason why our infrastructure is on the verge of implosion.

    Like

  66. NorthernObserver December 14, 2016 at 4:53 AM #

    Equally as interesting in the same paper are 1) the MoF extends the local borrowing capacity by a further Billion 2) the penalties on outstanding monies owed to gov’t, also claimed to a Billion, are waived.

    Like

  67. Hal Austin December 14, 2016 at 4:59 AM #

    I cannot understand why anyone, including voters in St James South, should take Donville Inniss seriously. He is a classic buffoon. Voter must remove him from public life.

    Like

  68. Gabriel December 14, 2016 at 4:59 PM #

    Exclaimer
    Pornville Inniss is playing to the catholic DLP gallery.They are the only JA’s who would believe him.Try and encourage the 40% to go to the polls next General Election and not stay away like they did in 2013.There has been nothing but destruction of the economy and the middle class ever since then.

    Like

  69. NorthernObserver December 14, 2016 at 5:39 PM #

    This story….we are NOT a tax haven has been bleated endlessly….beginning with the Gov of CB on down. They seem to think one needs to have a zero tax rate, and no reciprocal tax treaties, to be deemed a tax haven. Not true. Donville is only following suit, trying to protect what is a valuable sector of the economy.

    Then Minister Inniss goes on…”Inniss accused Oxfam of wanting Barbados to “come with a begging bowl” to it, rather than praising this country for lifting its people out of poverty.”

    This on the same day the MoF extended borrowing limits an extra Billion!!!! Does he appreciate DEBT is poverty? That he nor his government are doing a damn thing to alleviate poverty, but just taking on more debt, which is ensuring poverty. And worse, Bim is borrowing from itself, it can’t just declare bankruptcy and tell the foreign lenders to take a hike.

    Like

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